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When the number 42 was retired...

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  • When the number 42 was retired...

    I know that when Jackie's number was retired, players who currently had the number (such as Mo Rivera) were allowed to continue wearing it. Did all of them, whoever they were, keep the number? Or did any of them change numbers?
    It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the beans of Java that thoughts acquire speed, the hands acquire shakes, the shakes become a warning. It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion.

  • #2
    Mo Vaughn kept it until the end of his career, including stops with the Angels and Mets.

    Mike Jackson donned it for the Twins in 2002.

    Butch Huskey wore it for the Mariners in 1999 and the Twins in 2000.
    Baseball Junk Drawer

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    • #3
      I recall Tom Goodwin being part of this group too.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by ian2813 View Post
        Mike Jackson donned it for the Twins in 2002.

        Butch Huskey wore it for the Mariners in 1999 and the Twins in 2000.
        This implies Jackson and Huskey did not start wearing #42 until after the number was retired.
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        What's THAT guy doing?
        - one of the YES Network broadcasters, after the camera cut to me doing the thumbs-down after Todd Frazier's home run

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Gary Dunaier View Post
          This implies Jackson and Huskey did not start wearing #42 until after the number was retired.
          If I remember correctly, when #42 was retired, the rule was that anyone who was wearing it at the time had the right to continue wearing it for the rest of his career. I interpret that to mean that players held the option of wearing it whenever they wanted. Perhaps the team at times refused to issue it for certain players. I'm not really sure.

          In the case of Jackson, he wore #38 for the Astros in 2001 because Jose Lima had #42 at the time, so we can add Lima to the list.
          Baseball Junk Drawer

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          • #6
            Originally posted by ian2813 View Post
            If I remember correctly, when #42 was retired, the rule was that anyone who was wearing it at the time had the right to continue wearing it for the rest of his career.
            That's right. What I was wondering is, did any player who had #42 at that time, voluntarily choose to give it up, as opposed to keeping it like Mo did?
            It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the beans of Java that thoughts acquire speed, the hands acquire shakes, the shakes become a warning. It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Mr. Laser Beam View Post
              That's right. What I was wondering is, did any player who had #42 at that time, voluntarily choose to give it up, as opposed to keeping it like Mo did?
              I do remember reading there was a guy on the Rangers who switched numbers. His name was Marc Sagmoen.

              There's an interesting chart here that pertains to this topic.
              Baseball Junk Drawer

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              • #8
                I understood that the players already wearing #42 at the time the number was retired were allowed to keep doing so. But ian2813's statements that "Mike Jackson donned it for the Twins in 2002" and "Butch Huskey wore it for the Mariners in 1999 and the Twins in 2000" implied that Jackson and Huskey were not wearing #42 at that time.

                Let's see what Baseball Reference has to say about the matter...

                Mike Jackson: MLB career 1986-2004 with 8 different teams. He wore #42 from 1992 to 1999 with four different teams, did not play in the majors in 2000 due to injury, wore #38 in 2001 with the Astros, and went back to #42 in 2002 with the Twins. (link)

                Butch Huskey: MLB career 1993-2000 with 5 different teams. He wore #42 from 1995 to 1999 with two different teams, then wore #44 in 1999 with the Red Sox, and went back to #42 in 2000 with the Twins. (link)

                So both players did wear #42 in 1997. Subsequently, they either gave it up or were unable to wear it, but re-claimed it again at a later date - with teams other than the ones they played for in 1997. I would have thought that, since the number had been retired, once you stopped wearing it that was it, you couldn't get it back.

                Funny thing is that both Jackson and Huskey wore the number with the same team, the Twins.
                X
                What's THAT guy doing?
                - one of the YES Network broadcasters, after the camera cut to me doing the thumbs-down after Todd Frazier's home run

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                • #9
                  Did some research some time ago, the last player to wear #42 as a Dodger was a USC alum Ray Lamb, whom briefly had it taken out of the unofficially retired mothballs in 1969 that it was in since Robinson retired to honor Robinson, whom of course went to rival UCLA.

                  Only wore it briefly and I guess he figured there was some bad karma due to him not playing well with it, and 42 went back into unofficial retirement until it, 32 and 39 were retired en mass in honor of Koufax and Campanella joining Robinson in the Hall on 6/7/1972.
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Gary Dunaier View Post
                    So both players did wear #42 in 1997. Subsequently, they either gave it up or were unable to wear it, but re-claimed it again at a later date
                    I always assumed that - under the terms of the final retirement of Jackie's number in 1997 - players could keep the #42 if they already had it, but once they gave it up (whether it be the player retiring from the game/team, or asking for a different number), they would be unable to get it back at all. Isn't that the whole point of retiring the number?
                    It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the beans of Java that thoughts acquire speed, the hands acquire shakes, the shakes become a warning. It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Mr. Laser Beam View Post
                      I always assumed that - under the terms of the final retirement of Jackie's number in 1997 - players could keep the #42 if they already had it, but once they gave it up (whether it be the player retiring from the game/team, or asking for a different number), they would be unable to get it back at all. Isn't that the whole point of retiring the number?
                      I believe 42 was retired with the stipulation that active players wearing it were grandfathered in, and were entitled to keep it for the rest of their careers.
                      They call me Mr. Baseball. Not because of my love for the game; because of all the stitches in my head.

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                      • #12
                        ^ Exactly. But judging from some of the things I read right here, it appears that some players gave up the number and later got it back. I thought that once they did give it up, they COULDN'T get it back.
                        It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the beans of Java that thoughts acquire speed, the hands acquire shakes, the shakes become a warning. It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion.

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                        • #13
                          Again: I believe 42 was retired with the stipulation that active players wearing it were grandfathered in, and were entitled to keep it for the rest of their careers.
                          They call me Mr. Baseball. Not because of my love for the game; because of all the stitches in my head.

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                          • #14
                            If a guy was unable to wear the number because he went to a team where somebody else was wearing it, he would "lose" the number. Presumably though, he'd be able to get it back in the future if it was free. Perhaps there was some sort of mutual option on the number between the player and the team, and some teams didn't want to give it out.
                            Baseball Junk Drawer

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                            • #15
                              I remember that Butch Huskey wore #42 with the 1997 Mets. IIRC, he was involved in the pre-game ceremonies at Shea, with President Clinton and Jackie's widow Rachel. I think he stated in an interview that he chose #42 because of Jackie. I was living in Southern California at the time, and as luck would have it, the Mets were hosting the Dodgers on April 15, 1997, so I was able to see the pre-game ceremonies. Butch started that game at 3rd base, batting 5th, and went 1 for 4 with 3 strikeouts. Didn't matter, as the Mets won 5-0

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